KaLyn Cooper’s Christmas in Cancun

christmasincancunI’d like to welcome Guest Author KaLyn Cooper to my blog. She has a new release just in time for Christmas:

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Christmas in Cancun released on Monday so it’s a busy time for me as an author…and then there’s the whole Christmas Holiday.

Parties, shopping for gifts, a vacation with the whole family (not Cancun this year but we are headed to the Caribbean), shopping on warm islands, cooking, shopping for more food, decorating (and I do it BIG), shopping for more decorations, and then celebrating Christmas with my family.

Then there’s more parties and cooking and…and…

Somewhere in there I have to find time to finish my novella, Conquered in Cancun.

So much to do, and the time flies!

I don’t know about you, but for me, the more I have to do, the better I feel and the more “stuff” gets done. I can be the world’s best procrastinator, especially if I only have one or two things to do and there’s no time constraints. But if I have a whole bunch of things and they all have deadlines, I can rock a list.

Yes, I’m a list maker. There’s nothing I like more gratifying than taking that pen and drawing a line through the completed item, or scribbling through it to decimate that task if it was a tough one, or one I just kept putting off until it was essential.

Today, I have filled a legal pad with all the “stuff” I have to do.

Top of the list is to keep up with all the promotions I have going for Christmas in Cancun, and there are a LOT!

Through Dec. 6 – I am giving away a Diamond Ring to a lucky commenter over on my blog, Rants and Raves of KaLyn Cooper https://kalyncooper.wordpress.com/

Also through Dec. 6 – I am also one of ten authors in the Hottie Hunt blog hop. You can read my interview of Karl, the hero of Tara Quan’s Dec. 22 release, A Christmas Together. Visit all ten blogs, be sure to comment, then follow the instructions to enter to win eBooks and a $10 gift certificate.

Through Dec. 31 – The $100 Hottie Holiday Bonanza runs the entire month. Sixteen authors have chipped in to create a pile of prizes including a $100 gift card. All you need to do is follow the link and you are automatically entered. Comment and you get extra entries.

Dec. 6-10 – Hot for the Holidays. The lovely ladies at Love, Lust and Laptops will each be giving away prizes on their individual blogs and jointly we have even more, so there will be LOTS of winners!

I’m also blogging on several sites. If you comment on them, you are entered to win a pair of Diamond Earrings to be given away Dec. 31st. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for where I’ll be next.

Whew! Lots to do, but I love it.

Now, tell me your holiday plans. Parties? You hosting or attending? Where do you plan to spend Christmas? Did you buy anything really unusual as a gift? (I’m always hunting gift ideas.) Comment here and you’re entered to win those diamond earrings!

Christmas in Cancun Blurb

Busy building a new career with his catamaran company, former SEAL Jack Girard had all but forgotten about his grandfather’s quest to find the golden Mayan goddess statues until his brother’s beautiful widow, Jillian, and adorable daughter, Addison, arrive in Cancun with the research materials. His need to complete the family mission is almost as strong as his desire for Jillian.

Between raising her daughter alone and finishing her doctorate in Mayan anthropology, Jillian doesn’t have time for a man in her life. Although, after mourning her husband’s murder for two years, she’s ready for a man her bed.

 

An underwater Virgin Mary statue and centuries-old manuscripts lead the two of them through the Mayan Riviera and directly into danger.

 

During steamy Caribbean nights together, will they develop the ability to move on and discover the real treasure isn’t gold?

 

Excerpt for Christmas in Cancun

Jillian had been ready to scream for the police when the man grabbed her baby. She’d read about airport kidnappings in foreign countries and how, if the parents didn’t pay up immediately, they’d sell the child. She didn’t have much money and no idea how to get the massive amounts she was sure a kidnapper would require. She couldn’t let him take her baby. No, she wouldn’t let him take Addi.

The dark evil thoughts that raced through her fatigued mind delayed understanding the fact that he’d called her baby girl by name, her nickname. Then he’d said he was Jack Girard.

Jack? No. This couldn’t be Jimmy’s brother Jack. He was a Navy SEAL. Every picture she’d seen of him, and there were several, he’d been in one uniform or another. Or he’d been in nothing but low-slung swim trunks and behind the wheel of a boat as a teenager. He’d been clean-cut with short hair, was close shaven and extremely good looking.

The man who held her daughter was a different man altogether.

Jack Girard wasn’t this long-haired, shaggy, sun-bleached-blond Adonis with bulging tanned muscles under a blue polo shirt with a sailboat logo emblazoned over an impressive chest. The man before her looked deadly on every level. His light blue eyes were hard as arctic ice with hints of green. Then she watched his whole face transform as he smiled at Addi and poked a finger into her baby’s belly. The green had overtaken the blue, and he looked like a loving father playing with his child. Her child.

Jillian couldn’t breathe.

“You ready to meet your hellion cousins, little princess?” His voice was playful, yet its low tones reverberated through Jillian, shaking parts of her soul that had been dormant for more than two years. Since her husband’s murder. Addi squirmed at his touch and giggled.

“Uh…I’ll take her,” Jillian managed to push out through her tightened throat as she grabbed for her child. When he turned his broad smile toward her, her world focused on his white teeth, all of them perfectly straight except for one eyetooth, which turned slightly.

It was Jimmy’s smile. Except Jimmy was dead.

Her knees went weak. Her vision blurred. No matter how hard she tried, her lungs refused to work. Indistinct sounds echoed in the tall room and overwhelmed every one of her senses. The world went white.

“Whoa.” Jack’s voice shot through the encroaching fog in her brain, and a strong arm snapped around her back. “Breathe, Jillian. You’re safe.”

 

 

KaLyn Cooper Bio

KaLyn Cooper’s romances blend fact and fiction with blazing heat and heart-pounding suspense. Twenty-two years as a military wife has shown KaLyn the world, and thirty years in PR taught her that fact can be stranger than fiction. She leaves it up to the reader to separate truth from imagination. She, her husband, and bird dog live in Tennessee on a micro-plantation filled with gardens, cattle, and quail. When she’s not writing, she’s at the shooting range or on the river.

www.KaLynCooper.com.

 

Buy Links

Print   http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Cancun-Volume-KaLyn-Cooper/dp/1503004236

 

eBook

 

 

Author Links

 

Cherise Sinclair’s Edge of the Enforcer

CS_DoDH4_EdgeoftheEnforcer_coverinThe Edge of the Enforcer is the fourth book in the Dark Haven world … well sort of.  The first two novella-length books set in Dark Haven were in anthologies, Doms of Dark Haven and Doms of Dark Haven 2, and the third book was My Liege of Dark Haven.  For this fourth book, Cherise chose Zander DeVries, the “Enforcer” of the San Francisco BDSM club called Dark Haven, owned by Xavier, who was featured in Book 3.  Book 4 pulls in the main characters from previous Dark Haven books and the two Mountain Masters’ books.

Loose-Id Buy Link

Don’t miss the chance to win an e-book copy of Master of the Mountain.  Read through to the end to find out how to win.

What’s Edge of the Enforcer all about?

Alexander “Zander” DeVries is an operative for Simon Demakis’s security company (Simon was in the first Doms of Dark Haven antho) and a part-time mercenary. DeVries has just come back from a mercenary kidnap-and-rescue mission where one of his fellow mercs was killed and deVries was shot.  As a Dom with sadistic proclivities, after such a mission, he really needs to work out his anger, frustrations, and just all-round pissed-off-ness on some poor masochist’s body.  Since deVries has a lot of stress and dark emotions to shed, he can’t trust himself to scene with a sweet sub like Lindsey who owes him a blow job and anal sex, a debt she incurred by losing to him in the Dom-sub paint ball games (from the play party at Logan Hunt’s mountain lodge/resort in My Liege of Dark Haven).

Lindsey, who is attracted to deVries, is not into pain. She knows she owes him, but assumes since he hasn’t bothered to collect that he’s not interested in her. She feels it’s probably a good thing since she can’t allow herself to get involved with anyone because she’s on the run from crooked law enforcement officers who’ve framed her for two murders.  Until she decodes some encrypted files and proves her innocence, she has to remain solo, just in case she needs to pick up and run.

Her plan to stay uninvolved with deVries goes awry when he chooses to call in the debt she owes him.  He gives her a whole night of fabulous DS play and hot, Hot, HOT sex.  The morning after he mistakes something she says and it triggers one of his “hot” buttons. When he leaves, he does so in a callous manner that hurts Lindsey and allows her own insecurities to raise their ugly heads.

But the misunderstanding is temporary. After deVries seeks her out, arriving just in time to rescue her from a bad situation in a dangerous neighborhood, she’s hooked on deVries.

But is deVries hooked on her? Can Lindsey handle his level of sadism?  Can he be happy with a sweet sub who likes rough sex and some erotic pain, but no more? And even if the sex issues work out, will her past force her to leave deVries, the only man she has ever truly loved?

Since I don’t want to spoil the twists and turns Cherise takes the reader through, I’ll just leave you with those questions.  You need to read the book to find the answers.

Trust me, if you liked Sam and Linda’s story from Masters of Shadowlands series [This Is Who I Am], you’ll love deVries and Lindsey’s story.

Both Sam’s book and deVries’s deal with the emotional and psychological needs of the SM dynamic (and other plot issues, of course). While it’s true Sam and deVries are both classified as  sadists, they aren’t identical in their needs and urges.

For example, Sam likes to work with true masochists, and if they are also submissive, like Linda, then all the better. Hurting a true masochist makes Sam feel good in that he is fulfilling the masochist’s need for pain. He pushes Linda’s limits, knowing that is what she needs to release her pent up tensions. Sam’s sadism and Linda’s masochism satisfy their particular emotional/psychological needs and are a part of their “normal” sex life when they become partners. Their relationship is, in a way, symbiotic. Putting Linda into subspace, puts him into Dom-space.

DeVries likes to mete out pain to release his own tensions. His role as the Enforcer of Dark Haven allows him to alleviate his tension often, allowing him control in all other aspects of his life.  When his stress gets too strong, he needs to scene — and only male masochists can handle the punishment he dishes out. But after he’s meted out the pain and shed his demons, he wants sex — and not with the male masochists he’s hurt.  At that point, he looks for female subs as partners.  The resulting scene can include rough sex. It can be D/s. It can be sensual, almost vanilla.  It can include a lower level of pain per the sub’s tolerance levels.

DeVries knows himself and his urges well enough to accept that he doesn’t have to have a masochist in his personal sex life/relationship.  He could be happy living with a sweet sub like Lindsey.  This is unlike Sam who needs a submissive masochist for an intimate relationship outside the club.  DeVries can slake his strongest sadistic urges at the club with a male masochist and then go home and make love to a woman like Lindsey.

Does deVries push Lindsey’s limits on pain?  Sure, but he also knows when to call a halt.  DeVries can also be sweet.  He sleeps with Lindsey after he collects the debt she owes, giving her more pleasure than she has ever known. He then stays the night — and he cuddles!

The above is an example of why I like all of Cherise Sinclair’s erotic BDSM romances.  She focuses on how BDSM works for the individual. She doesn’t paint all sadists, all masochists, all Doms and subs with the same broad brush. Her characters come across as real people and not caricatures.   The  fact I can even see Sam and deVries as romantic heroes is why I consider Cherise Sinclair the premier BDSM romance author.  I believe in Sam and deVries. I like them.  I want to meet them.  They are good men despite the fact they like their sex lives with a huge-ass smattering of kink.

If someone had ever told me, I would enjoy and want to re-read erotic romance stories in which the hero was a sadist and who caused his lover pain — I would’ve called them crazy.  But Sam’s story is one of my top five favorite Cherise books, and deVries’s just bumped another book down a notch. [I’ll list my top five fave Cherise books at the end — this is determined by how many times I’ll go to one of them for a comfort read.]

Cherise’s characters, be they Doms, subs, masochists, sadists, lovers of menage, new to the BDSM scene or veterans, are not one-dimensional.  They have real lives.  Some clean offices. Some own construction companies. Some are kindergarten teachers. Some are ex-military and work in security or law enforcement.  They have families. They give back to their communities. They are, in fact, people you might run across at the local grocery store and think, “hey, that person is really nice.”

Cherise’s characters are you and me. Their sexual preferences are just not vanilla.

Other than strong characters with real emotions and real lives – – what makes Cherise a top notch author in any genre, not just romance?

A. She plots extremely well. Her romance arcs have just enough angst to make the characters work through things to reach their happy ever after. She smartly avoids the super-angst of soap operas. [May I just say I hate super-angst and TSTL characters who don’t talk to each other?] It’s a fine balance, but she perches on that narrow line very well, making her stories often heart-wrenching. A reader knows going into one of Cherise’s books that she will be put through an emotional wringer, but that there will be a happy-ever-after for the main characters when the end is reached.

The external conflicts usually have some sense of danger or suspense which propels the story along at a good pace and puts extra pressure on the characters who are struggling with the emotional issues of trust and love. I have to say I am a sucker for external conflicts that exacerbate the characters’ personal journeys.  It’s what I write, and what I like to read.

B. Cherise’s voice is clear and strong with a hint of playfulness — and after all, sex, even kinky sex, should be fun. Her voice has a strength of purpose. What purpose?   Showing a sense of right and wrong in both the BDSM world and in the real world in which her characters act out their stories.  There is a deep sense of justice and humanity in Cherise’s books that sucks me in.

C. Her sense of place is spot on.  You always know where you are and what things look, smell, and sound like.  Setting is important — engaging the senses is important — and Cherise knows that and delivers.  She also never sacrifices the story to showcase nit-picky details.  No info dumps in her writing.  Cherise knows what she is — she is a story-teller, not an interior decorator or a travelogue writer.

So, if you haven’t read a Cherise Sinclair erotic romance — and you are an open-minded reader who enjoys being entertained by excellent writing — give her a try.

I promised to list my Top Five Cherise Sinclair faves.  These are the books I like to re-read when I can’t find anything new to read and I want a well-told story with characters I like — and, of course,  hot sex.

Monette Michaels’ Top Five Fave Cherise Sinclair Books:

1.  The Dom’s Dungeon – a stand-alone book.  I love the set up. I love the humor. I love Alex’s dominant traits and his humanity. I love this book so much I own it in e-book and print.  It’s my first pick when I need a sexy comfort read to take me away from the stress of a bad day.

2.  Breaking Free, Masters of the Shadowlands, Book 3 – Beth and Nolan’s story.  This is a sigh-worthy book.  And a several hankie story.  Nolan is rough and tough and scary-looking, but he has a mushy middle when it comes to Beth. Beth has had a horrific past, but has valiantly rebuilt her life. She still has fears and needs which are often in conflict.  She is a true submissive, but her trust has been so abused she has a hard time getting past her fears.  She can’t believe her good fortune in finding Nolan, the prefect Dom and lover for her. The late-in-the-book crisis is perfect (which demonstrates that Cherise has the Three-Act plot structure down well) and the scene leading to the HEA in this book is one of the best I’ve ever read. I also own this one in both e-book and print.

3.  If Only, Master of the Shadowlands, Book 8 — This book features a menage relationship among three characters who were supporting characters in past books in this series.  Cherise gave enough hints in earlier books that these three would scene.  The book was worth waiting for.  The heroine is sub Sally, who is very outgoing and smart (Master’s in Computer Forensics smart), and the two FBI agents, Galen and Vance, who led the investigation into the sex-slave-trafficking story arcs from Books 5, 6, and 7. Galen and Vance finally get Sally where they want her, and discover she is not the carefree sub she presents to the world. Each character has a bunch of emotional baggage which complicates their being together while they all, independently and then together, attempt to shut down the last vestiges of the trafficking ring.  I normally do not like menage books, but this one I like.  It works.  The three need each other. This is the power of Cherise’s writing – she pulled me into these three characters’ story and convinced me the menage would work for them.

4. This Is Who I Am, Masters of the Shadowlands, Book 7– Sam is a sadist, still stinging from a really bad marriage and divorce.  He helped rescue Linda from the sex slave traffickers (in To Command and Collar) and she is just trying to forget what had happened and get back to her normal life.  But she can’t.  She’s not “normal,” whatever in the hell that is. She is a masochist and a submissive.  She “needs” the release pain gives her in order to deal with every day life.  She visits Shadowlands and finds the one Dom who can give her what she needs is Sam.  In his own way, Sam needs Linda as much as she needs him.  I am so not into pain, but Linda’s character is so finely drawn that as a reader I understand why Linda needs it.  Some people run miles and miles a week or exercise to the point of exhaustion or do extreme sports to get the endorphin high that allows them to function on a daily basis.  Linda needs pain and then the pleasure. Sam gives her both. I went into the book with trepidation. I was so sure I wasn’t going to like Sam the sadist, but I ended up loving him. He and Linda are perfect together — and the life they forge is “normal” for them.

5.  Edge of the Enforcer, Dark Haven 4 — I explained why I liked this book above. DeVries cuddles! And likes to perform oral sex.  And has a wicked way with a Violet Wand. Says it all.  I’ll also add that Xander and Lindsey are perfect together.  I imagine them getting married, having lots of babies, and being blissfully happy.  Yeah, I’m a romantic. But so is this book.

What is YOUR favorite Cherise Sinclair book and why?  One comment will be chosen and the winner will receive an e-book copy of Master of the Mountain.

Visit Cherise Sinclair’s web site to find out more about her books.

Evanescence is Out!

Formerly published  in Edge of Night Anthology

Formerly published in Edge of Night Anthology

 

It’s out now!

Buy Now at Liquid Silver Books

Blurb:

Security specialist Kai Axton blends into the night, a mist-like shadowy image of his human form. Because of his freakish nature, he feels doomed to live his life alone–until he meets Sian York.

Sian is not who or what she seems; her past is shrouded in a veil of mystery. As Kai prepares to make his move to claim her, Sian’s past explodes onto the scene, forcing him to reveal his darkest secrets. Can Sian accept Kai’s nature, or will he be doomed to live in the shadow world, forever alone?

Evanescence is Available for Pre-Order Now!

Formerly published  in Edge of Night Anthology

Formerly published in Edge of Night Anthology

This is a re-lease of a Rae Morgan novella previously published in the Edge of Night anthology.

*Joyfully Recommended. “Evanescence is a well paced, action packed thriller.” — Rosemary DuBose.

*Two Lips Reviews:  “Evanescence by Rae Morgan is a fast-paced novella with twists and turns.”

* Reviews from the original publication of Edge of Night.

Blurb:

Security specialist Kai Axton blends into the night, a mist-like shadowy image of his human form. Because of his freakish nature, he feels doomed to live his life alone–until he meets Sian York.

Sian is not who or what she seems; her past is shrouded in a veil of mystery. As Kai prepares to make his move to claim her, Sian’s past explodes onto the scene, forcing him to reveal his darkest secrets. Can Sian accept Kai’s nature, or will he be doomed to live in the shadow world, forever alone?

Pre-Order at Liquid Silver Books.

Available at major e-book retailers on April 7th.

No Secrets is Live!

LSB Cover Art Template for PhotoShop No Secrets is now Live at Liquid Silver Books and other on-line retailers.

Blurb:

With dark magick threatening to take over the world, Sheriff Debby Teague runs from her magical fate—and her mate.

Boris Petrov follows Debby to Tennessee; he won’t allow her to ignore his love or the magic she denies.

As the dark forces gather strength and threaten to destroy Debby’s safe haven, only the consummation of their love will save them and those around them.

Debut Author KaLyn Cooper

ExplosiveCobination600x800I’d like to welcome my friend and brand new author (her first book releases today!) KaLyn Cooper to my blog.

KaLyn and I met at a Lori Foster Reader and Author Get-Together over two years ago and I sort of mentored her on this book.  She put up with my copious notes and edits and the result along with a lot of hard work on her part is Explosive Combination, on sale now at Liquid Silver Books and other on-line retail outlets.

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I’m set to blog for the next few weeks like a teenager who lost her virginity and just had to tell all her besties about it. An apt analogy since my first romance novel released today, Explosive Combination, and you’re the first BFF I’m blogging.

In arranging for blogs, many have a set of questions. Most are the general five W’s (who, what, when, where and why) but Rosanna Leo really made me think. My favorite was: “What led you to tell this particular story?” Since my brain makes weird connections sometimes, I thought I’d share the birth scenario with you.

Like all my stories, Explosive Combination, is based in unusual facts. I was researching explosives for a different book and learned the following:

True fact: Scientists at the University of Michigan discovered that co-crystallization of two common explosives creates the most lethal, non-nuclear bomb on the planet, casually called Chaz. I repeat, the most lethal, non-nuclear bomb on the planet! OMG! (And Chaz? Really? Couldn’t they name it something more Alpha, worthy of its deadly capabilities?)

True fact: In September 2012 Popular Mechanics magazine published the formula, which is similar to a process used in pharmaceuticals. (Can you believe they actually did that? The link to the article is on my website. Maybe they think bad guys can’t read English.)

True fact: In 2003 the ATF was moved to the Department of Justice and became the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives with the capability to create an International Response Team.

My brain put pharmaceutical methodology, i.e. drugs, together with Colombia and the ATF’s international reach and Explosive Combination was born. Add to that the fact that I was supposed to go to Colombia once upon a time, but the FBI said no because it would cause Macho Marine (hubby) a big problem.  For that full story, check out the Love Lust and Laptops blog I did yesterday.

Blurb:

Separately, Harper Tambini and Rafe Silva are lethal…together, they’re explosive.

ATF Special Agent Harper Tambini is kidnapped by a Colombian drug lord and forced to use her explosives knowledge to kill his competition before she can escape with the help of undercover CIA agent Rafe Silva. As they make their way through the rivers, mountains and jungles, their desire for each other detonates. But Harper reminds Rafe of his murdered fiancée, and the shadow world he wants to leave. Harper learned the hard way that men never stay, so now she doesn’t keep them around long enough to see if the sparks can light a fire that will last forever. In their short time together, can they crystallize a relationship, or will it all blow up?

Excerpt:

Harper heard the click of her door unlocking. Knowing her role as his pretend lover, she ran to the door. “Who’s there?’

“It’s me.” Rafe strolled in as if he had the right to her room, and her.

In nothing but dark silk boxers riding low on narrow hips, he was outlined in yellow by the dim hall lights. His broad shoulders filled the doorway. As he moved toward her, light caught raised pectoral muscles and flashes of well-defined six-pack abs. His swagger defined testosterone in motion. He was a specimen of pure male confidence and dominance.

He addressed the guards at the door. “Take a break. I’ll let you know when you need to come back. I’m going to enjoy my woman for a while.” He left the door open enough for his guards to watch as he claimed Harper, yanking her into his arms and covering her mouth with his.

His kiss was heaven and sin wrapped in one hard body. And he was hard everywhere.

Rafe slipped his hands around her, and she felt their heat through the thin silk of her nightgown. Intensity built quickly within her, and she grabbed his head, shoving her fingers through his silky dark curls. He pulled her forcefully against his body, but she didn’t resist. No man had ever made her feel this way so fast.

At the click of the door, Harper tried to shove Rafe back, but his solid body didn’t move. She had to get away from him before she lost her senses, so she stepped out of his embrace.

“That should get them talking.” Her voice was roughened, but she kept it low. “The whole compound will know you were in my room by breakfast.” She walked over to the nightstand and pulled a bottle of chilled water from an ice bucket. She needed to cool down, from the inside out. She cracked the seal, chugged down half of it, and then set it on the nightstand. “I’m going to bed…and to sleep.”

Win a free copy of Explosive Combination.

Comment here and you’re automatically entered. Several ways to win. The more you enter, the greater your chances. Winner will be chosen at random on March 15th.

Join me and comment while I blog with:

Love Lust and Laptops, short link to March 2nd post.

Rosanna Leo at http://rosannaleo.blogspot.com/ on March 4th.

Daisy Banks on March 5th at http://daisybanks.wordpress.com/.

About the Author:

black & greysmKaLyn Cooper writes sizzling hot romantic suspense based in fact. Twenty-seven years as a military wife has shown her the world and the men and women who protect it every day. Thirty years in public relations taught her fact can be stranger than fiction, but she leaves it up to the reader to separate truth from imagination. She melds fact and fiction together with blazing heat and heart-pounding suspense at www.KaLynCooper.com.

Social Media:

Like and post on my Facebook Page

Twitter @KaLynCooperbooks

Pinterest

BUY LINKS

Print:

Use discount code PYQ4X6YR for 10% OFF – Only at Createspace.

Buy from Amazon.Com.

eBook:

Liquid Silver Books
Amazon Kindle

Explosive Combination will be available March 3rd from Amazon, Barnes & Nobel, iTunes and where eBooks are sold.

Emilia Mancini’s Seducing Kate

seducingkate-510 (1) I want to welcome my fellow LL&L lady, Emilia Mancini, who has a sexy new book coming out. She is also sponsoring a contest to celebrate her new release. Personally, I loved her first book, The Rebound, so I can’t wait to read Seducing Kate.

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While doing blog tours for a new release, a lot of people ask something like: What was your inspiration for this story?

I can’t tell you what inspired Kate and Kyle’s story. All I know is that these two wrapped themselves around my brain and wouldn’t let go until I finished telling their tale. Even then, they wouldn’t stop circling in my brain.

I love these characters. I love their courage and connection. I love their dedication to each other even though they know their relationship can’t last. And I love the lessons they learn from each other.

Kate learns that she doesn’t have to date jerks to have a lover who is willing to treat her a little rough. And Kyle learns that he likes to walk a little closer to the wild side than he had previously realized.

These are great lessons, and they learned them in the best possible way. In the bedroom.

Seducing Kate will be available January 24 from Musa Publishing.

As part of my release celebration I am offering you a chance to enter to win not only a copy of Seducing Kate, but also a Silk Rope Set which includes wrist and ankle binds and a satin blindfold. (You’ll want these after reading the book, I’m just helping you out.)

Silk_Rope_Set_thumb

Comment below,  and on any of the blogs along my tour (listed on www.emiliamancini.wordpress.com)  for a chance to win. The winner will be notified February 1st.

Blurb:

It was lust at first sight for Kyle when he met his roommate Justin’s mother Kate. Kyle, a college transfer, was too far from home to visit on short school breaks, so Justin took him to Minneapolis where his mother was serving up a family meal for Thanksgiving.

One look left Kyle with a healthy obsession for Kate which grew with each visit. When he landed an internship in Minneapolis, he moved in with Kate for the summer, and got in touch with his voyeuristic side. It wasn’t until one late evening and a few too many glasses of wine that Kyle began to suspect his attraction wasn’t one-sided.

When he dared to push the issue, he found Kate more than willing to succumb to his seduction.

Excerpt:

I’d barely spent time with Kate, just a few minutes in the kitchen before John had come strutting in. I had sat across from her at dinner making awkward conversation while Justin and John glared at each other over the spaghetti and garlic bread. It wasn’t like she’d crawled across the floor half naked and begged me to fuck her.

What the hell was it about her? Sure she was beautiful, but I’d dated beautiful women. None of them had pushed me to the point of obsession. I wanted nothing more than to throw Kate down and fuck her until she screamed. Not cried out like she had moments ago, but screamed. And dug her nails in my back. And wrapped her legs so tight around me I couldn’t breathe. I didn’t know why. All I knew was my body was borderline insane with lust, and my dick was so hard it hurt.

“Fuck.”

I turned the cold water on and splashed my face a few times to snap out of the Kate-induced haze. When I was finally able to think about something other than having sex with her, I went back downstairs.

I tried like hell to focus on the game, but my mind kept wandering. No, it wasn’t wandering. It was reliving my trip upstairs, from the groans, to the flash of tit, to the blush on Kate’s cheeks.

I held out for another hour of video games before I couldn’t take the agony of wanting her any longer. I went up to my room and slipped between the cool sheets of the guest bed. I put a sock over my dick and got off to images of my roommate’s mother.

I pictured her pale ass sticking in the air as I gripped her hips and slid into her tight pussy. I imagined my fist tangled in her hair as she sucked my cock. I even fantasized about her standing over me in black heels and a tight business suit as she ordered me to jerk myself harder.

As I came—hard—I wondered how I was ever going to control myself around her.

EmBIO:

Emilia Mancini is the naughtier side to author Marci Boudreaux. Emilia stays hidden in the shadows like a nefarious side kick, slipping out only when the stories Marci wants to share are a little too grown up to be called sweet romance.

Seducing Kate is Emilia’s second release and, at least for the moment, her crowning glory.

Visit Emilia at :

www.emiliamancini.com

https://twitter.com/Emilia_Mancini

https://www.facebook.com/authoremiliamancini

Pinterest board for Seducing Kate: http://www.pinterest.com/emiliamancini/seducing-kate/

Buy link: http://musapublishing.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=37_36&products_id=736

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hvr2dqozsBY

Rosanna Leo’s Predator’s Refuge

Predator's Refuge Cover

I want to welcome my friend, Rosanna Leo to my blog.  She has a new book in her Gemini  Island Shifters series coming out today.  I love this series (um, shifters, people!!) and I know you will too. 

*****

Thank you to Monette for hosting me today! I’m so excited to be here as it’s release day for me, and I couldn’t think of anyone I’d rather share it with.

Release days are probably the most exciting days for authors. Certainly, they are for me. It’s the day all our hopes and dreams for a book become reality. I can’t think of anything more thrilling than these moments…unless someone were to tell me my heroes just turned real and are waiting for me in the bedroom! Not likely to happen, I suppose.

When I set out to write my Gemini Island Shifters books, quite frankly, I did not anticipate a series. However, my publisher wisely suggested I attach a series name to the first book, and voila, the series was born. Predator’s Refuge, today’s release, marks the third book in the series. In my opinion, it is also boasts some of the sexier moments in the franchise.

Why is this one so sexy? Well, in throwing together this particular hero and heroine, it really felt as if the sexual tension had been kicked up a notch. You see, my heroine, a lynx shifter named Marci, is experiencing her first heat. She could have sex at the drop of a hat! However, her sex-crazed spirit animal seems to be on the lookout for a specific man.

When tiger shifter Anton Gaspar arrives on the scene, all hell breaks loose. Not only does Marci have to contend with some very unwanted emotions and desires, Anton also becomes prey to his voracious tiger. However, Anton fights his attraction to Marci for some unusual reasons. Will he manage to stay away from her? Gosh, we hope not!

Predator’s Refuge is available at www.lsbooks.com and will also be available at Amazon, ARE, B&N, Kobo and other e-outlets.

Blurb:

Lynx shifter Marci Lennox has worked at the shifter-friendly Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort all her adult life. It’s more a home to her than a job. When her boss goes on vacation, putting her in charge, Marci is thrilled. Finally a chance to prove she has the mettle to run a resort.

Her confidence is shaken when new employee Anton Gaspar appears. One look at the mysterious tiger shifter spells trouble for Marci and for her sex-crazed lynx. Anton is judgmental, condescending, and a little misogynistic. Unfortunately, Marci’s lynx thinks his tiger is more delicious than an oversized bag of Maltesers.

It becomes difficult for Marci to remain neutral near Anton, especially when she learns of his troubling past and unusual family circumstances. However, when dangerous incidents occur on the resort, the lynx woman and tiger man join forces to combat the threat to the lodge and its guests.

Harder still is the quest to combat their explosive feelings for one another. As they explore their mutual passion, they realize the danger at the resort is more insidious than they ever envisioned. Their dreams, their love, and their very lives are at stake.

Excerpt:

The sliding doors swung open for him and he walked in, head high.

Immediately, the fragrance hit him, activating his Jacobson’s organ. He swallowed, tasting it on his tongue and at the back of his throat, and wondered if he was mistaken.

No, how could he mistake the unique scent of a female cat in heat? It was too delicious a scent to forget. Sweetness coated his taste buds, winding a delirious path down his throat. As his head swam, he blinked and tried to clear his thoughts of the sexual imagery racing through it.

The scent did not belong to another tiger shifter, but some other type of predatory cat. One whose perfume he hadn’t sampled before. One who must be particular to this region. Cougar? No. Mountain lion? Surely not.

Whatever she was, her scent teased him with its delicious flavor.

Don’t, he warned himself. Wasn’t it enough that he spent the last few years of his existence trying to escape the sick wiles of the grasping women at court? And God only knew how hard he’d worked to maintain a state of abstinence at Pannonhalma, devoting his life to meditation. He’d come here to work, not lose himself in a sweet piece of…

Stop it. This was no time to think of pussy, even though he’d never been more desperate for a taste of creaming woman.

His tiger howled inside him, hungry for that which it had been denied for almost two years.

Still the perfume, more intoxicating than any he’d known, wafted toward him. He wanted to close his eyes and drink it in. The unyielding power of the aroma could make him forget his vows. Granted, he wasn’t really a monk, but he had followed the monastic lifestyle from day one at Pannonhalma. The purity in the monk’s life had been the very thing he’d required to get his life back on track.

So why did he want to find the source of the scent and fuck her until she begged alternately for mercy and for more? Her need seemed strong. Whoever this lady cat was, she must be in dire agony for her scent to be so powerful.

None of his business.

Mentally caging the growling tiger inside him, he shook his head and approached the front desk. He dropped his luggage and cleared his throat at the woman working there. Her head had been down as she read some reports, but she looked up now.

“Welcome to the Ursa…” Her jaw fell open and her sentence hung in the air, unfinished and clearly forgotten.

Well, well. A beautiful little lynx.

The scent of desire emanated from her. Only now, it flourished under his gaze, increasing tenfold, if such a thing could be measured. Tendrils of teasing perfume waved around her body, blending into the golden brown highlights in her hair and winding their way around her hips and breasts. Exuding from her pores and sinking straight into his. Delicious, sensual saturation.

Anton’s heart raced and his tiger spotted its new prey. The animal licked its lips.

RosannaRosanna Leo is a multi-published, erotic romance author with Liquid Silver Books who lives and breathes paranormal romance. Several of her books about Greek gods, selkies and shape shifters have been named Night Owl Romance and Two Lips Recommended Reads. When not writing, she can be found haunting dusty library stacks or planning her next star-crossed love affair.  Visit Rosanna’s website

Baby, It’s Cold Outside Blog Hop

Security Specialists International, Book 2.5

Security Specialists International, Book 2.5

Welcome to the Just Romance Me “Baby’ It’s Cold Outside Blog Hop”!

If you began here, you might want to go back and start at the beginning HERE and visit all the wonderful authors’ blogs and get chances to win fabulous prizes.  What a way to start off the new year and stay inside nice and warm while hopping.

I don’t have any secret recipes for those cold nights — other than a nice shot of single malt scotch always works for me … so I decided to share a brrr-cold rescue scene from my romantic thriller — FREE for download novella — Storm Front, Book 2.5 in the Security Specialists International series.

Security Specialists International, Book 1.5

Security Specialists International, Book 1.5

You can download this novella and my other SSI novella, Stormy Weather Baby, Book 1.5, at my publisher’s site.  Yes, they are both free.  My gifts to you.  And if you like them, please give my other books in the SSI series a chance, Eye of the Storm, Cold Day in Hell, and my newest release, Weather the Storm.  They are all available for download at my publisher and Amazon, B&N, Kobo, and other online retailers. Print books are available at Amazon.

ON-BLOG GIVEAWAY(in addition to the one for the hop in general):

MAKE A COMMENT  — AND GET A CHANCE TO WIN A DOWNLOAD OF MY NEWEST SSI BOOK, WEATHER THE STORM.  Winner will be announced after the end of the blog hop.

Excerpt:

As soon as Earl felt the slack, he kicked off the side of the ravine and covered the ten feet or so with one kick-off. He hung over Tessa’s body for a second before making a controlled landing on the ledge next to her. The ledge was solid, thank the fuck.

“Tweeter, the ledge can hold us both,” Earl said. “Come on down.”

As Tweeter made his final descent, Earl tugged and received more slack and then bent over Tessa’s still body. She lay on her front, her face turned to the side. Her eyes were shut, her lashes lined with ice. Her skin was whiter than the snow she lay upon.

“Tessa?” No response.

He brushed the snow away from her face with gloved hands. Removing one glove, he checked for a pulse and found it. He sighed with relief. “She’s alive.” He checked her neck and determined it wasn’t broken as far as he could tell. “Neck doesn’t seem to be broken, but I want a collar down here. Tweeter, a hat … need a hat here.”

Most heat loss was from an uncovered head. He needed to get her warm ASAP. Hypothermia was the biggest danger at this point.

Tweeter hunkered down next to him and put his own stocking cap on Tessa. His climbing partner had on a balaclava just as he did and would be fine without the extra layer of wool.

“If you feel it’s safe, then lift her,” Tweeter said. “I’ll get this solar blanket under her so we can wrap her in it.”

Earl nodded. “Tessa, sweetheart? Talk to me.”

Still no response, and she wasn’t shivering. Not a good sign. Even unconscious her body would shiver to produce heat. Her lips were blue. Her skin looked dehydrated, and he remembered she had already shown signs of altitude sickness.

He felt under her coat and swore. “Godammit, she’s soaking wet.” He looked at Tweeter whose face was as grim as he felt. “Probably from the exertions of trying to climb out.”

Tweeter nodded. “No matter how she got wet, it isn’t good. We need to move, Earl.” The man grabbed the collar sent down to them and gently placed it around her neck.

“Let’s do it.” Earl lifted Tessa’s limp body into his arms and laid her on her back on the blanket Tweeter had spread on the ground.

“Fuck me.” Tweeter’s curse said it all.

Tessa’s clothing was torn and bloody.

They quickly wrapped her like a mummy in the high-tech sheet which would keep her from losing any more body heat.

“God, sweetheart, look at what you’ve done to yourself.” Earl lifted the edge of the blanket just enough to slide his hand inside. He quickly, by touch alone, checked her ribs, collar bone, and pelvic bones for breaks. Then he moved to her legs. “No obvious breaks that I can find.”

SSI had a fully equipped medical facility run by Lacey Jones, a trauma nurse and the wife of Quinn, Ren’s third in command. She could check Tessa out more fully later.

“She didn’t climb all the way up from the stream bed.” Tweeter looked over the edge of the ledge upon which they perched.

Earl retucked the blanket more closely around Tessa. He brushed the back of his fingers over her icy cold cheek. Her lashes fluttered—the first sign of movement from her since they’d gotten there.

Thank you, God.

“Looks like the SUV got hung up on a tree. I see an area where some roots are still hanging out from the side of the ravine. It’s fresh damage.” Tweeter turned to look at Earl. “She was lucky to have gotten out before the vehicle fell to the bottom.”

She had to have been terrified, but she’d done what she had to do. His woman had grit.

“Yeah.” Earl stroked her face once more before putting his glove back on. “We can find out exactly what happened later. Let’s move.”

The wind gusted even harder now than it had on their descent. Tweeter had to fight to stand upright on the ledge. Climbing out with an unconscious woman wouldn’t get any easier the longer they waited.

“How do you want to do this?” Tweeter eyed the climb. “Sides of the ravine are too rough to haul her up. She has enough lacerations.”

“I’ll take her on my back.” Earl began to fashion a rope harness with the extra rope he’d carried down. “You can tie her to me by my harness.”

As Earl quickly fashioned a torso harness with doubled lengths of rope, Tweeter hunched down by Tessa and commented, “I did this with Keely when we went rock climbing one summer in Montana.”

Earl put the make-shift harness on Tessa with Tweeter’s help and tightened it.

“Keely sprained her ankle,” Tweeter added. “She rode my back on the way up and out. But she was conscious and short and only weighed about ninety pounds at the time. Tessa’s almost six foot and weighs maybe one forty.”

“I can do it.” Earl brushed his lips over Tessa’s forehead. Other than the one fluttering of lashes, she hadn’t made any other motions the whole time they’d been there. “I’ve carried wounded soldiers on my back, with sixty-pound packs, up the side of mountains in Afghanistan in worse conditions than this.”

Those times hadn’t been a walk in the park, but they had been crucial and necessary. Carrying Tessa to safety fit into the same category—life and death.

He pulled the wool neck scarf off his neck and wrapped it around her lower face to give her more warmth. “You’ll have to get her on my back and then make sure she’s tied to me securely. The wind’s vicious.” He didn’t want her torn from him with a savage gust.

“I can do that.” Tweeter double-checked all the harness knots. “Knots I’m good at.”

At Tweeter’s last words, Tessa blinked and slitted her eyes open. What little body heat they’d managed to salvage for her had helped her rouse a bit.

Earl murmured, “Hey there, sweetheart. Welcome back.”

“Cold. Sick…” she muttered and moved her head from him to Tweeter and then back. “Where—” Her voice trailed off and she closed her eyes.

“Tessa! Stay with me, baby. Where do you hurt?” Earl sat and gathered her into his arms, adding his warmth to the solar blanket.

Her eyelids fluttered, but remained closed. She licked her lips, which were tinged blue and very chapped. “All … over. Sick … threw up.” She coughed, and Earl tilted her body so she could breathe easier. “Do I have … flu?”

Earl groaned. “No, baby.” She wasn’t completely with them. Delirium wasn’t good. He looked into Tweeter’s worried eyes. “Let’s haul ass.”

Then Earl spoke into his head set. “Ren, have someone get an IV ready. She needs fluids.”

She’d been sick before she left the Lodge; he’d smelled it in her bathroom. If she’d been sick again on the mountain, she was in danger of not only hypothermia, but hypovolemia and possibly hypovolemic shock. A deadly double whammy. He’d lost men that way on forced marches at high altitude in a war zone. He wasn’t losing her.

“On it,” Ren’s calm voice replied. “Price is setting it up now in the Hummer. We have heat packs ready to go also. Just get her up here. Weather’s deteriorating. A new storm front is moving in with blizzard warnings for the rest of today and tonight.”

“Roger that,” Earl replied. “Hold her up for a second, Tweeter.”

Tweeter took over bracing Tessa as Earl stood. “Okay, I’ve got her.” Earl pulled Tessa up and held her against his body, her front to his front. She was as limp as an over-cooked noodle. “Can you hold her upright while I turn and take her on my back?”

“Got it. Go.” Tweeter encircled Tessa from behind and braced her against his body.

Earl turned his back to them and stooped. “Lean her on me and brace her. I’ll pick her up and then you can tie her to me.”

“Got her, Earl,” Tweeter confirmed.

“W-w-what’s … happening?” Tessa slurred the words.

“Shh, it’s okay, Tessa. Earl’s giving you a piggyback ride.” Tweeter’s explanation was spoken in a gentle voice as he positioned Tessa for Earl to pick her up.

“Yippee.” Her tone held no inflection, and her voice was breathy. She could speak, but aphasia wasn’t far off. Without warmth and proper hydration, her brain would shut down unnecessary systems in order to protect the crucial internal organs to maintain life.

Earl reached for her legs, hooked his arms under her knees, then lifted her onto his back. Tweeter immediately began to secure her rope body harness to Earl’s climbing one. Tessa’s head lay on his shoulder, her cheek turned toward his neck. The scarf he’d wound around her face must have slipped, because he could feel her labored breathing against his neck.

“Tweeter, we’re gonna lose her,” Earl rasped. His fear for her well-being tinged his voice.

“She’s on,” Tweeter said. “Let go. I need to secure her legs to your waist, so they won’t impede your climbing.”

Earl straightened, and once he was sure her body was tied to him, he let go of her knees one at a time. Tweeter fashioned a sling to support her bent legs and attached it to her rope harness and then to the D-rings on Earl’s climbing harness.

“Her torso and legs are secure, but what about her arms?” Tweeter had come to stand next to him. “She can’t hold on. She’s unconscious again. Do you want me to tie her arms around your neck?”

“Yeah, but tie her wrists to the D-rings on my shoulder,” Earl suggested. If he were on level ground, he would’ve just held her arms around his waist, but he needed both arms for climbing.

“Gotcha.” Tweeter quickly tied Tessa’s wrists to D-rings on each of Earl’s shoulders. “I made sure the ropes were around her gloves and loose enough not to cut off circulation.”

Neither man spoke the thought Tessa might not have any feeling by this point in any of her limbs. Paresthesia had probably set in once Tessa had gotten cold and then been exacerbated by her loss of fluids.

“Yo, on belay,” Earl informed the men on top.

“Belay on. Climb,” a Walsh twin said.

“Climbing,” Earl replied.

When he felt the tightening of the slack in his ropes, he found a foothold off to the right of the ledge and stepped off the ledge, first his right foot and then his left. He found his balance at a slight angle from the rock wall, and then, using all his upper-body strength and training, began to climb up the wall. The men on top picked up the slack and assisted, but much of the work was still on him. He used natural footholds when he could, but relied on the men at the top to make sure the rope stayed taut as he walked his way up the side of the ravine.

Tessa’s extra weight, coupled with gravity, made the climb a challenge. The wind didn’t help the situation as the gusts shoved him around on the unforgiving, cold, wet wall.

Earl ignored the strain on his hands, arms, and shoulders and concentrated on using all the skills he’d learned in the Army. He’d be sure to drop his trainers a thank you for pushing him to his limits during Mountaineering School. Failure had not been an option then, and it wasn’t one now.

Tweeter climbed easily and effortlessly at his side, using a hand to keep Tessa’s head from flopping around even with the neck brace.

The computer geek brother of Keely Walsh-Maddox might never have served in the military, but Earl would take the man climbing in a war zone any damn time. The man was a cool customer under pressure, and if Earl hadn’t been here, he didn’t doubt the youngest Walsh son would’ve gotten Tessa up the side of the ravine all by himself.

A slurred “sorry” was murmured against his neck. Tessa had roused again as she was jostled about on his back. Her bruised and lacerated front had to be hurting. He wanted to howl at the pain he was causing her.

“Shh, we’ll talk later, sweetheart.” Earl paused long enough to turn his head toward her face. Tessa had somehow raised her head and was looking at him through slitted lashes covered in ice crystals. He smiled with what he hoped was reassurance. “Close your eyes, Tessa. You’re safe with me.”

She blinked and buried her face against his neck with a deep sigh. She went even limper against him, and he began climbing faster.

Ren looked over the edge, his facial expression fierce, and spoke over the headsets. “You’re close. Price, Paul, and I have you. Tweeter, Loren has you. Let us do all the work once you get to road level.”

“Roger that.” Earl kept climbing. Tweeter echoed him a second later.

When he and Tweeter reached road level, two sets of hands pulled him and Tessa over the edge and onto the top of the small stone wall. Earl let Ren and Price unhook Tessa and take her off his back while he held on to the wall.

His body was wracked with shudders as the combination of fatigue and stress hit him. His rasping breaths showed as little puffs of white in the frigid air. He took the short respite to regain control over his body after the arduous climb in blizzard conditions. Even now, he could barely see ten feet in front of him, and the storm was getting worse.

Once Tessa was freed from his back, he swung over the wall and stood. Shoving the effects of the climb aside, he held out his arms to Ren. “Give her to me.”

Ren handed her over, and Earl jogged toward the Hummer they’d come in. It was barely visible through the sideways sheets of snow.

Pacing him, Ren said, “We set up the back seat. Lay her on the reclined one. Get the IV started, and then we’ll head back to the Lodge. Short clock, guys. The storm front is moving through now.”

“Roger that.” Earl lifted Tessa into the back of the Hummer. Price had beaten them to the vehicle and was ready to take her inside. Earl followed quickly and began to strip the wet clothing off Tessa.

Price moved to help, but Earl glared. “I got this. Thanks. Get the IV started, okay?”

Price nodded and began testing for a vein on the arm closest to him. He swore like the SEAL he’d been. “Shit, her veins are sunken. She’s too dehydrated. Her blood volume sucks. Butterfly it?”

“Do it.” Earl grunted as he wiped the chilled dampness off Tessa’s skin with one of the extra blankets in the Hummer and began to stuff Tessa into a man’s thermal long-sleeved shirt and long johns. “Somebody get some dry socks on her and warm gel packs on her extremities.”

He wasn’t sure who responded, but soon Tessa had on two pairs of men’s thermal socks with hot gel packs between the layers on the soles of her feet.

Tessa moaned in pain. He knew how it must feel—like hot pokers stabbing her feet―but she needed to get warmed up. He took care of the hand Price wasn’t working on, using two more socks with a hand warmer between them. With the butterfly stick going into the vein on the top of her hand, the IV fluid should help warm that hand up.

“Any more blankets?” Earl sat next to Tessa on the side that didn’t have the IV. He opened his jacket and the heat he’d built up climbing almost created mist in the cold air coming from outside the Hummer. He pulled Tessa with Price’s help into his arms and pulled his jacket over her as much as he could.

Price wrapped two more blankets over Tessa and tucked a larger warm gel pack under the blankets at her waist to help with the warming. “Best we can do for now. You all set?”

“Yeah, let’s go.” Earl rubbed his cheek over the top of Tessa’s head as it lay on his shoulder. He angled his face and kissed her cold forehead. “Hang in there, sweetheart.”

Price nodded, shut the rear passenger side door, and climbed into the front next to Ren. The other men had already started back to the Lodge to make sure all was ready to receive Tessa.

As Ren sped up the road, the Hummer’s heating system began to pour out its heat.

Earl was hotter than hell, but he could care less. Tessa had started to moan and shiver. The heating packs and the fluids and electrolytes were doing their job. He only hoped they’d gotten to her in time and had managed to forestall any permanent damage.

Price looked over the back of the passenger seat. “How’s her face? Any noticeable frost bite?”

Earl tipped up Tessa’s head and looked. He let out a sigh. “Looks okay. She must have just fallen unconscious right before we reached her. She climbed for a ways, so she had some circulation and heat production while she was exerting.”

“It was hard.” Tessa’s eyes remained closed and her voice was weak, but the slurring was almost gone. “Thought I was gonna croak. So sick. So tired.” She let out a sigh and snuggled into Earl’s chest. “Warm. Nice. Smell good.” Then she yawned like a kitten who’d tired itself out and relaxed bonelessly into him.

“God, baby.” Earl kissed the top of her head.

Price looked from Earl to Tessa and then back. “You claiming her?”

“Yeah.” Earl glared at the too-handsome man. “You got a problem with that?”

From what Earl had heard from the other SSI men, Price had nailed every eligible female over twenty-one and under thirty-five in Idaho County and points north to Coeur d’Alene. The man wasn’t getting anywhere near Tessa if he could help it.

“I don’t poach.” Price turned to look out the front as they approached the Lodge’s underground garage area. “But it’s her choice, ya know. I’ll be around in case she decides she doesn’t want to be claimed.”

Ren shook his head. “Price, do you have a death wish?”

“Nope, just sayin’ little Tessa hasn’t agreed to take on Big Earl.” Price sounded smug.

“She will.” Earl kissed her cheek and nuzzled her ear. “She likes how I smell.”

“She will.” Earl kissed her cheek and nuzzled her ear. “She likes how I smell.”

That admission had set it in stone as far as he was concerned. She recognized him on some primal level just as he recognized her. She was his, and he was hers, and all that was left were the details of how soon she’d move in with him.


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